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 [F] New York Times on the Web Forums  / Science  /

    Missile Defense

Technology has always found its greatest consumer in a nation's war and defense efforts. Since the last attempts at a "Star Wars" defense system, has technology changed considerably enough to make the latest Missile Defense initiatives more successful? Can such an application of science be successful? Is a militarized space inevitable, necessary or impossible?

Read Debates, a new Web-only feature culled from Readers' Opinions, published every Thursday.

Earliest Messages Previous Messages Recent Messages Outline (16141 previous messages)

bluestar23 - 06:50pm Nov 1, 2003 EST (# 16142 of 16228)

Canada told: 'Stop being defense freeloader'

Former NORAD boss chastises his government for waffling with U.S.


Canada must give up its passive role as a "defense freeloader" and participate in a missile defense shield under development by the United States, a former Canadian military official asserts.

Canada's high-tech defense industry has suffered from its government's political waffling over the U.S. ballistic missile defense program, said Lou Cuppens, a retired lieutenant-general and former deputy commander for the North American Aerospace Defense Command, or NORAD, the Canadian Press reported.

"As a retired military member, I know Canada can't stand around and be a defense freeloader forever," Cuppens told participants at a conference on opportunities for aerospace, defense and security in Eastern Canada.

"Some countries view us as that," he said, according to the Canadian wire service. "We don't do our share."

Canadian politicians have sat on the fence for over a decade while the U.S. has sought involvement in its missile shield, Cuppens said.

Now that the multibillion-dollar system is nearly completed, he added, Canada is beginning to consider its position, but all the educational opportunities that could have been gained from participating in the technology are lost.

Cuppens noted some parts of the system could be manufactured in Canada.

"You are being denied one heck of an opportunity," he told the business audience, according to the Canadian Press. "This is high, high tech."

Defense Minister John McCallum, who in a major policy shift recently announced Canada will consider participation, said the decision will require another year of deliberation, including further cabinet consultation.

McCallum already has ruled out agreement to any space-based defense system.

The Canadian Press said some government members are worried about the potential weaponization of space, but Cuppens, now a defense consultant, insists the critical need for defense, noting the threat from China and North Korea, will push the project toward completion.

At the moment, the only thing American and Canadian military leaders can do in case of a first strike is inform the countries' leaders of the likely targets and time of impact.

"That's all that can be done," he said, according to the Press. "What's defending North America? Nothing."

cantabb - 06:51pm Nov 1, 2003 EST (# 16143 of 16228)

Let George do it ?

bluestar23 - 06:53pm Nov 1, 2003 EST (# 16144 of 16228)


Yes, you beat me to the punch by quite a bit on the Taiwan missile....

bluestar23 - 06:54pm Nov 1, 2003 EST (# 16145 of 16228)

No Showalter....a victory..? Just lchic down...? too soon to tell....

cantabb - 06:56pm Nov 1, 2003 EST (# 16146 of 16228)

Bluestar: Forget that.

How about the newly-minted "pulling an rshow" ? (could be "a" if you prefer !)

bluestar23 - 06:58pm Nov 1, 2003 EST (# 16147 of 16228)

"World Asset" complains, though...

"Yeah .... poor me .... fending the rough end of the pineapple on the board with Ghouls while RS is out 'trick-o'-treating'..."

bluestar23 - 07:05pm Nov 1, 2003 EST (# 16148 of 16228)

We don't realize that rshow and lchic see themselves as defending "with their lives" their crucial "corpus" of "work" from secret agents and evil thieves....

cantabb - 07:19pm Nov 1, 2003 EST (# 16149 of 16228)

I do understand they have that messianic complex, naive and starry-eyed as it is. But that seems weaved in attempts to resolve some personal rshow's issues, which lchic seems committed to help resolve, so that he can "function" to save the world. The impression I get !

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 [F] New York Times on the Web Forums  / Science  / Missile Defense